O L Y M P I A C O S   1 9 2 5
O L Y M P I A C O S   1 9 2 5
Pre-Ferencváros – Olympiacos Press Conference

Pre-Ferencváros – Olympiacos Press Conference

Read below quotes by Olympiacos coach José Luis Mendilibar and player Chiquinho ahead of our European fixture.

Olympiacos is set to play their second leg against Ferencváros, Thursday (22/02, 22:00), for the UEFA Europa Conference League knockout round play-off. On the day before this European match, the red-and-white outfit’s coach José Luis Mendilibar and player Chiquinho took on the press conference duties.

Here are details of the presser delivered by the Spanish coach:

You are back in a city that brings amazing memories to you. Do you think that something of the sort will happen again in tomorrow’s match against Ferencváros?

Truth be told, the city reminds me of that day; I do have fond memories of Budapest. The same way Olympiacos bring in mind many things in common with Sevilla and my last year’s spell there. However, now we are to play a qualification match, not a final. Olympiacos features great players and they should put on a great display to earn this qualification. Moving on is up to them and the more focused they are, the closer they will be to grabbing the ticket for the next round.

You talked about being focused. You played a great match against Ferencváros and an even better to PAOK. What should Olympiacos do more to qualify?

Compared to the first leg, we were worse than our opponent in the first half and they put pressure on us to follow their rhythm although at home. So, I want to start the match in a better way compared to that match, if we start cautiously kai pile up the pressure high and have them play according to our rhythm, then things will be tough for them. But if the put pressure on us and we fall back, then things won’t be good for us. Personally, I like my teams to exercise pressure high and not fall back in defense. Our objective is to impose our own rhythm and control the match. This is what we want and we will try to do from the very first minute.​

Have you made up your mind on the starting eleven? And are we to see some new approach in relation to the previous matches against PAOK and Ferencváros?

You will know tomorrow; as you said, we still have one training session left where many things might happen. More or less, we know how the starting line-up will look like, everyone is ready to be capped, most likely there will a change, my mind is set and you will see everything tomorrow.

You said we like defending away from the box and this is a job also for the central midfielders.in previous matches, we have seen various triplets of players being selected, so do you think this is the key for the team’s line-up?

No, it’s just an idea or opinion I have as a coach. I like defending high rather than low. If footballers want to listen to me, then they will have to play defense high. They are all good players and respond to the insights I give them. This is the plan; this is the core idea; our players should play and defend high. As you said, it is a good thing that in previous matches, all different players who played, managed to respond well to the idea and that makes us really happy.

Ferencváros coach Stankovic talked about a hell-like environment and called this match as a final. How would you call it?

It’s an important match for us; it will determine who will qualify and it’s an important match for Olympiacos. Just as Chiquinho said, footballers love playing in a packed stadium rather than an empty one. We came for a hell-like stadium, that of PAOK, where we delivered. I do not think our players will be affected by the atmosphere and everyone should know that if we move on in this competition and wherever we go to play, we will have also to face supporters ready to boost their teams.

Chiquinho: “A heated stadium will be no problem for us”

The stadium is expected to be heated; so, given that Olympiacos just played a tough away match with a hot atmosphere, how ready is the team to play against Ferencváros?

We are accustomed to playing in such heated stadiums and under pressure; this is not an issue. Such environment always helps us play better football.​

This is the 3rd consecutive match for Olympiacos to play at top gear; are the players ready to deliver in this final? Also, was how helpful was it to get a day-off?

Generally speaking, it’s helpful for players to perform every three days, because this enables them to condition themselves. As you said, we also have had a day-off, so we have to be “fresh”, both physically and spiritually.

You joined midway the season and you immediately displayed great skills on the pitch. What helped you do so? Also, what has changed within the team and you perform like that since Mr. Mendilibar onwards?

It was easy for me to bed in, because I found many fellow countrymen here and I acclimated in no time. Having said that, the more matches one plays, the better he feels and adapts himself. Our new coach has conveyed his own ideas to us and we try to put them in practice. When things go well, one becomes more confident and, day after day, we earn more and more things.

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